I’ve been doing a lot of solo running lately. I usually don’t mind. It’s quiet time. A time to think and come up with brilliant ideas. But now that it feels and looks like the middle of the night on my morning runs, I miss having a running buddy. Of course, the number one reason is safety. I just feel more confident and less jumpy when I’m running in the dark with someone else. The mind can play some really strange tricks on you! Having a running buddy to chat with makes the miles go by a lot quicker, too. Is it me or do dark runs seem longer than daylight runs?
Last week, I was doing my usual zero dark thirty run when I saw not one but two different groups of women running. I’ve never seen anyone before! I so wanted to turn around and catch up with each of them and ask if I could run with them. But I didn’t. It felt like it was too creeperish of me. I mean, wouldn’t you feel a little bit strange if some random person started following you in the dark? I’d probably get maced or beat up!
Later that day, I posted my situation on my Facebook page and wanted to know how everyone found their running buddy or group (if they had one). The majority said they found buddies through their local running group or in their neighborhood. Great places for sure but unfortunately, that doesn’t work for me. The group that I meet up with on some Saturday mornings is kind of a melting pot of runners. I have yet to meet one runner from the group who lives in my town and wants to run that early. If I wanted/could run in the evening, it would be no problem. Lots of group runs or buddy options there.
So I was left with no new ideas. Magically, I received a message from Mariette saying she lived in my town, was an early morning runner and would love to run together. Initially, my paranoid self was hesitant and thought STALKER. After replying back trying to be very vague about my running times and habits, it seemed like she was legit. Phew! We actually had our first running date yesterday. Yay!!!! We’ve got a similar pace, are both training for the Seacoast Half Marathon and have three year olds. The miles flew by as we talked about everything and got to know each other. This is going to be good for me in more ways than one. I have a tendency to make my easy runs really easy, like wayyyyy too easy. While it’s good to have an easy run, I think by making all of my them too easy is cheating myself. When I run with a buddy or group, I’ll pick up the pace that still feels easy even though I’m going at least 30 seconds faster per mile. Talking distracts me from looking at my watch and makes me run by feel more than anything.
I’m super excited to meet up again with Mariette. Hooray for running buddies!
What do you prefer – solo or buddy runs?
How did you find your running buddy?